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Think Tank Identifies $22 Billion in Pentagon Savings for Fiscal Year 2014


WASHINGTON – Today, the Project on Defense Alternatives is releasing a Fiscal Year 2014 update to the Defense Sense report, outlining 16 recommendations that, taken together, achieve more than $22 billion in national security savings in Fiscal Year 2014. 

The Pentagon is now reviewing the results of the Strategic Choices and Management Review, which Secretary Hagel has said will help inform decisions over how to implement tens of billions of dollars in spending reductions in Fiscal Years 2014, 2015, and beyond.

The recommendations contained in the FY14 Defense Sense update provide an illustrative list of programs that the Pentagon and Congress can cull as a means of grappling with sequestration and new strategic realities.  The report’s recommendations also will likely figure in efforts to amend the National Defense Authorization Act and the Fiscal Year 2014 defense appropriations measure.  

Click here to access the update.

The updated Defense Sense recommendations include a reduction in procurement of the troubled F-35 Joint Strike Fighter as well as a delay in the refurbishment of the M1 Abrams tank.  Other savings identified include missile defense; a reduction in Virginia-class submarines and DDG-51 destroyers; and the removal of 15,000 additional U.S. troops from Europe.  All of the recommendations included in the update enjoy wide bipartisan support.

The recommendations focus on:

  • Assets that mismatch or exceed requirements, assets that reflect Cold War priorities, and assets for which more cost-effective alternatives exist.
  • Acquisition programs suffering persistent cost overruns, delays, or serious shortfalls in capability, and those based on immature or unproven technologies.

The proposed options can be implemented immediately and are realistic.  Taken together, these options would reduce defense spending by five percent from current levels in real terms.  Even greater savings could be achieved by rethink­ing our national security commitments, strategy, and missions.